Friday, July 3, 2020

The big orange quilt

Hi everyone! How are things at your house these days? Have you been venturing out? Here in Maryland, we've done a decent job of keeping the virus in check, and our numbers are pretty good, so I've felt safe enough to go to a couple of places this week. Don't worry, I always have a mask and hand sanitizer, and I have a semi secret stash of Clorox wipes in my car, too. But I went to a farmer's market, and I had lunch-- in person!-- with a good friend. It meant so much to me to see her that I may have dropped a few tears as I was driving away. I have really missed seeing actual humans that are not on a screen.

After lunch, I came home and confronted a problem I've been having: the quilt I'm supposed to be making for my nephew. A long time ago, I started a quilt for him, using a free pattern from Kevin the Quilter. The ones that I've seen online turned out great, so I had high hopes. Alas, it was not to be! Sorry, Kevin, but I just couldn't face one more 4-patch. Time to turn to a different pattern altogether:

Yes, I grabbed all the pieces of orange and gray (his choice!) that I hadn't cut into 4-patches yet, and used them to make Elvira, which was a quarantine quilt along pattern by Gudrun Erla. If you look closely, you can see that I also used up some of the 4-patches that weren't stitched together yet. Hey, you gotta do what you gotta do to get rid of all that ornage.

Because I was determined to use those 4-patches, I had to adjust the widths of the strips, which turned out okay because my nephew is a very large man and needs a very large quilt. He's going to get his wish, because this quilt top is about 64 by 84. This will make a nice lap quilt for him, don't you think?

I call this quilt "Big Orange" because, really, what else could you call it? If you have very sharp eyes, you will notice what I did when I ran out of big enough orange pieces to finish making the B blocks from the pattern, but just looking at it, I can't really tell that there is any issue. I don't think my nephew will notice, do you?

I've ordered some batting, and will baste this quilt as soon as that gets here. I've got a wide back gray polka dot for the backing, and I'm really hoping it doesn't give me any trouble. This is a bigger top than I'm usually comfortable with doing on my own, but I've got a plan, and I think if I baste it well enough it will work out okay. I'm not sure I have orange thread to quilt it with, though, so I should definitely check on that!

I only have these three pictures of the quilt top because it's so big that I can't get a picture of the whole thing. I've really got to get some landscape areas where I can hang big quilts. As it is, I'll have to have my nephew hold it up when it's finished. I do have one more orange-ish picture, though:

Aren't those flowers pretty? I do really love flowers, but i'm still learning about what will grow here. This is a daylily that kind of showed up here by surprise, and I like it! I think it can stay, but it might have to move to a slightly different spot this fall. For now, though, it's pretty cheerful where it is.

Hope you all have a happy Independence Day in these strange, party-free times, and keep on being careful and staying healthy. Potato salad is quite tasty on your own porch, too!

Sharing at Confessions of a Fabric Addict, Finished or Not Friday, Brag About Your Beauties, and Quilt Patchwork Applique.

Friday, June 26, 2020

A little bit of mercy

Hi everyone! Getting a bit of a late start this morning, but I promise there are some pretty pictures coming up. It's a lovely day here in Baltimore, and I hope it's lovely where you are, too. Our roof got a temporary patch this week, but we had some strong storms that pushed off the major work for another week, and we got a ridiculously high bid for some other work we need done. A homeowner's work is never done, is it?

I finished a quilt this week! Yahoo! A few weeks ago, I bought myself a very expensive present, and I kept the old one and set it up with the walking foot permanently. This is the best thing I could have done, because I finished this top faaar too long ago, and now it is all quilted up and cozy.  Here she is:

This is a donation quilt that is going to Bernie for Mercyful Quilts. I made this from a panel last year and I think it could work for a man or a woman, don't you? I finished it off yesterday and even washed it, but it didn't stop raining in enough time to get some pictures. It was worth waiting until this morning, though, because it's nice and sunny now.

A few weeks ago, Bernie posted a quilt and talked about how she had had a "quilter's block" that had kept her from quilting it. When I read that, I immediately thought of this top. I had almost no ideas about how to quilt it, and then later I had really complicated ideas about how to quilt it. In the end I just did an uneven diagonal plaid with the walking foot, and it turned out great.

One problem I had with this quilt was that I could not get it basted for the life of me. I tried taping the backing to the floor, clamping it to a table, I even tried pinning it on the design wall. The danged backing just would not cooperate. I ended up doing this:

Yep, I pinned it directly to the deck boards! It was the only thing that worked.  I swept it all really well, and I knew the quilt would be washed after it was quilted, so it wasn't a huge deal. It worked, and I got that sucker basted in no time. And no wrinkles on the back!

Right now, this quilt is in a box by the back door, ready to head off to Bernie. I hope it brings someone a lot of comfort in a really hard time. We could all use that, couldn't we?  Here's one little bit of comfort from a friend that I got in this morning's mail:

Wendy offered me some aqua batik scraps she had, as well as some "runny" yardage, and she sent this really cute pincushion in the package, too. Isn't it darling? Thanks so much Wendy! It makes me smile and will be  great for my flower head pins.

Okay, I am going to brave the post office and get that box sent off to Bernie, then I think I'll tackle the dye in that yardage. I've got a few good ideas, and I got some Retayne, so I'll let you know how it works out! Hope you all have a lovely and restful weekend. Keep those masks on, wash your hands, and stay healthy!

Sharing at Confessions of a Fabric Addict, Brag About Your Beauties, Finished or Not Friday, and the Patchwork and Quilts Party on Sunday.

Wednesday, June 24, 2020

Making progress

Hello everyone! Hope you all are having a good day.  We keep having storms that take out our power, but otherwise it's been an okay week here so far. Well, except for the part where the hubs and I may have finally hit the point where we have spent too much time together. Two full time jobs, a cancelled vacation, a new granddaughter we can't meet, a pandemic, civil unrest, *and* home improvements have finally proven to be a little much. Good thing we can sometimes escape outdoors! Or rage clean, which is what I sometimes do. (The shower is currently sparkling.)

Meanwhile, down in my little kingdom where I make all the rules, I've been working on getting some projects finished up. I've been putting some time in on this one:

Yes, we've seen this before, but I needed a pretty picture for the top of the blog here. This is a very old project from before we moved to the East coast that I've finally taken out of the box to finish up. This is just the center here, and I've finally sewn the sections together.

Turns out that there is not a lot left for me to do to finish this. "Past me" left a lot of very helpful notes for "future me," so it looks like all I have to do is make a whole lot of flying geese and some more of the hopscotch units for the borders.

This quilt goes together in sections, not rows, so I have to finish the geese before I can really go any further. Apparently I made all of the blocks and the center sections, but I stopped with the border parts. Yay for past me, because now I don't have a lot to do to complete this top. The only bad part is that I bought this as a kit from a rummage sale (for some ridiculously low price) and the kit was from 2008, so the directions call for making the geese one at a time-- and it has pieces that only allow that, not the faster four-at-a-time method. Once you've done things the faster way, you just don't want to go back. I will be strip piecing that other border, though.

I can't be sure how many until I'm completely finished, but there will be some really great scraps left over from this project.

I'll need to come up with something to do with these rather than just throwing them in a scrap bin, because these are such nice fabrics that go so well together. Any ideas? (They are all Shadow Play fabrics by Maywood Studio, in case you want to know.)

The other thing I'm working on is making some more masks. Siiiggghhh. That was me, sighing like a 14 year old. I'll have to wear one every day for every class come August, so I'm trying out new patterns that are more comfortable and that I might be able to teach while wearing.

This is my current favorite, a pattern by Bonnie Hunter that you can find HERE. The shaped patterns don't fit me well and come right off my nose, and the seam bothers me, but the pleated ones are better. I cut up an old t-shirt and it made great cording!  I can pull these nice and tight around my head, too. My hubby likes this pattern so much that I'm adapting some masks that my friend Jen made and just adding the longer cording to his.

So, that's what I'm up to right now! I got most of the curtains finished, with just one more pair that needs hemming, and I spent a very nice afternoon cutting some random scraps into regular sized squares-- 2-1/2, 2, and 1-1/2 inches. I also spent some time watching these guys in the front yard:

I think the storms have pushed them out into the open, for some reason, because they are everywhere right now. Or maybe I've suddenly become a Disney princess without realizing it. Do you think that's it? Yeah, me too.

Hope you all enjoy the rest of the week! Stay cool, healthy, and dry!

Sharing at Midweek Makers

Saturday, June 20, 2020

In the pink

Good morning everyone! Today's post is brought to you by the letter D, for damp, and B, for boom. Actually, boom! boom! boom! accompanied by very bright flashes and then, very excitingly, a fire. All of which added up to no power all night. Yeah, no fun.

I think you can guess what happened. We had some pretty strong storms, and it was apparently too much for the electrical infratructure. Or maybe something got struck by lightning. Who knows? All I know is that more than one transformer blew, and one caught fire for a brief time. It was semi exciting, but it did mean that the post I was working on got wiped, and that I got to have takeout for dinner for the first time in a long time. So, you know, good and bad.

All that to introduce the paltry few blocks I have to show today! Here are my pink Ohio Stars for the RSC this month:

These are a little damp, as I took the photos in between rain showers. I promise that they are dry now. I do love pink, and these stars are super easy to make and let me paw through those pink scraps. The larger star has a pink that is very old, from pre-blogging days. Which reminds me that somehow this blog turned six years old during quarantine. Six! Time flies, doesn't it?

Because we're at the halfway point, I pulled out the rest of the stars for a "halfway" picture:

Hmmm. . .I seem to be missing a couple of smaller aqua stars. I'm not sure that I made them, but they weren't in the box. I also skipped the dark blue, and I should probably find something to add there. Not dark blue, but maybe a royal blue? Either way, these stars could use a happy shot of yellow, don't you think?

Finally, I had a visitor this week, and I finally managed to snap a photo:

Not a great photo, since it was taken through the window, but you have to be quick with these guys! The deer live in the woods near our house, and occasionally come up near the house. This one came right up to the patio, and ran off right after I got this picture. We've also seen her (or one her friends, you know) with a fawn recently. It's like living at the zoo, really. Still haven't managed a picture of the foxes, but they're here, too.

That's my update for now! Hope you all are having a great weekend, with power and everything. May your internet never falter, and your ice cream not melt!

Sharing at soscrappy for RSC20.

Tuesday, June 16, 2020

Drawing the curtains

Hello all! How's it going in your corner of the universe? Lots going on here, as we are finally getting some remodeling done, which had been postponed by the virus. We seem to have this thing where we buy houses that need some love and then make ourselves crazy getting them to where we want them to be. I have to tell you that this is the hardest time we've had getting contractors to even show up. No clue why this is, because boy, they are charging us plenty to do the work. More expensive even than Delaware, which is really saying something.

Anyway, while people were walking on my roof, I went downstairs and made these two lovely blocks:

These are the June blocks for the color challenge at Patterns by Jen. You can see that these are opposite colorways, which I've been making all year, but in the same fabrics. Maybe not the best choice, but I don't have a lot of blue and I wanted to use these batiks. I ordered some batiks from Connecting Threads, and they were supposed to be blue-greens, but they turned out to be just plain blue. There were only a couple of blue-greens in the fat quarter pack, which is disappointing, because I want to make the quilt for our bed from blue-greens, from aqua to turquoise. Think beach glass. If anyone knows of some nice aqua batiks, please point me in the right direction!

After that, I had to buckle down and finally get to hemming up some curtains for our windows.

This house is a mid-century modern, which is a great layout, but the windows are a problem. They are very high up on the walls, and since we're fairly short, we can only see out a little bit. It turns out, though, that there is no problem seeing in from the street, and I'm tired of the ugly, dirty blinds that came with the house. So, I've started cutting and hemming these curtains, and I may have to actually make some others.  I did see that there are people on Etsy who make curtains for very tall windows, and if any of you have a recommendation of who to hire for this, please send that along too!

That's my update for now, at least in the sewing arena! Otherwise I'm getting a bunch of exercise, writing some new classes for the fall, doing what research I can without being able to actually go into the library, and generally trying to relax and let my brain recover from months of stress.  I'll leave you with this picture of some lovely flowers I came across on a walk:

I don't know what they are, but they're very cheerful!

Hope you all are having as good a week as possible in these very fraught times. I'm still feeling discombobulated by everything that is happening in the world and our country right now, but I did realize that one of the things I can do about it is to teach better, so I've been redoing some of my materials to make sure I have a broad section of races and perspectives represented. Black lives matter, folks, and it's up to us to be sure the next generation knows it, too. 

Sharing eventually at PBJ.

Thursday, June 11, 2020

Colorful trio

Hello everyone! How are you all doing? Hanging in there?  I ventured out into the previously-closed world once this week, and it was odd.  There are a lot of empty shelves at Target, folks.  Thankfully, Mr. Academic Quilter now has a replenished supply of essential snacks, so it looks like we may be good for a while. I did go to a farmer's market, too, which was a very happy experience. Tomatoes that taste like tomatoes!

I also made my way to the sewing room a few times. I may have finally gotten all of the fabric that I bought online over the last few months put away, and I worked on some of the projects I showed last time. It was quite invigorating! So much so that I finished up these three happy pieces this week:

Look at those flowers and the green trees! How happy is that? These are three fabric scrap baskets, which is one of my projects for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge at Angela's this year. I am still trying to catch up from the last few months, and so I made this month's color, which is the pink, and one of the colors I missed, which is the green, and an extra black basket just because.

You'll notice that the green basket is a bunch of different green hues. I don't have enough of any one green to merit separate baskets for dark green, sage green, light green, etc., so this one is for "mixed greens." Of course, bright green is the exception, because I have plenty of that in its own fabric home.

The black basket was a surprise, because who knew I had that many black scraps? But I did, and it turned out to be much, much prettier than I thought it would be. Of course, I don't have much black fabric, but this one is big enough to hold the few gray bits I have left, too. 

 Those were my big finishes for the week! I am super happy with them and have already put them to their intended use. Not surprisingly, the pink basket is pretty full, so we may need to do something about that later this year.  Is it me, or would those three colors look great together in a quilt? Perhaps that's how these baskets will get emptied!

Hope you all have a lovely weekend. It's raining here, but there is plenty to do in the house. You thought I was behind in the sewing room! Do you know what happens when you barely clean anything for a couple of months? It isn't pretty, but it has to be dealt with. Pass the Mr. Clean and cross your fingers for me!

Sharing at Confessions of a Fabric Addict, Finished or Not Friday, and soscrappy for RSC20.

Tuesday, June 9, 2020

Design wall updates

Hi all! Just taking a little time from this stupid paper that I'm writing to say hello and show a couple of things that I've pulled out to work on. I usually go to a conference early in June, but that's been cancelled this year, and I'm not sure what I'm supposed to be doing right now. Somehow sitting on the deck with a cool drink doesn't feel right.

Last week, when I was feeling pretty low (still feeling that way, but no politics today!) I started going through some of my project boxes to see the status of some things I have in there. It feels like forever since I looked at these, so it's like finding a bunch of projects started by someone else that I get to finish up. If I feel like it, you know.

First up is this project, if anyone remembers it:

I started this back when we lived in Wisconsin, which means it's been in that box for a long time. They aren't all on the wall, but I do have all the blocks and most of the pieces, just not put together. It looks like all I have to make for this is a bunch more flying geese and then it will be done.  There are some appliques, too, but I think I'll probably leave those off and not add the larger (unpieced) border. It will be a little smaller, but that's ok with me.

Then I pulled out these blocks, which are much more recent:

These are star blocks using some black fabrics I had and wasn't doing anything with. I think they look great together. I have the black pieces cut for 11 more blocks, which means that there are probably two more blocks in another box somewhere.  I have to cut the white backgrounds and the accent pieces that make the central stars, but then these should go together pretty easily.

Then I got distracted when I took the leftover pieces out of the box to put in a scrap bin and started on this:

Why not make a small fabric scrap basket like the ones I'm making for the RSC this year? No reason not to, except that I don't have much in the way of black scraps, except what I've already cut. Maybe I'll store some grays in there, too.

And then, of course, the modern blocks quilt top keeps growing:

This is turning out way better than anticipated. I'm just kind of sticking the blocks up there as I finish them, so I'm looking forward to playing with all the color distributions.

Whenever I wander into the sewing room in the next few weeks, I'll be working on one of these. I'm easily distracted, though, so who knows what will happen? There are a lot of fun things to work on in those boxes!

I hope everything is peaceful and calm where you are, and that you are enjoying beautiful weather.  I've been out walking a lot, and came across these beautiful flowers at a neighbor's mailbox:

These certainly cheered me, and I hope they cheer you, too! Have a good week!

Tuesday, June 2, 2020

Love and good will

Hi all. I've been trying to write this post all day, and I do have something quilty to talk about today, but it feels a little silly to talk about quilts and other hobbies right now, doesn't it? Every day I wake up and I'm not sure what country I'm in. I thought that the pandemic was a very challenging time, and what is happening in our country right now just leaves me at a complete loss for words. I am heartbroken, and angry, and fearful all at once, and like many of you I don't know where we go from here.

I said I had something quilty (and pretty happy) to show today, so let's talk about that first, and those of you who don't want to read my other thoughts can just skip them.  Here is my mostly finished project:

These are two little quilts that are going to Jack's Basket through Sarah's Hands to Help quilt drive. This is an awesome organization, and they ask for smaller quilts, so these are just 36 by 36. They look a little wrinkled, but I promise that they are very cozy, and I took these pictures in the evening, so the shadows make them look worse. They're really very cute in person.

These are quilted but not yet bound, and they might look a little flat to some of you. I used flannel inside instead of batting, and put flannel on the back. I really like how that turned out, and I might do that for all my baby quilts from now on. They are lighter and fold up a little smaller, and they will probably fit into the baskets a bit better.  I also used the wavy stitch on a quilt for the first time, and I love how it turned out.

I have to admit that the end of the challenge snuck up on me, so for the rest of the week I'm planning to power quilt through my donations. Cross your fingers, though, because I also have a paper to finish by the 12th. What's a little pressure at this point?

And on to the non-happy part of the post:

Talking about those happy little quilts has lightened my mood a little, but after a few minutes the reality of it all comes back. I've tried to keep politics out of this blog, mainly because I want it to be a fun and happy refuge from the craziness of the rest of the world. It would be wrong, though to ignore what's going on right now. There are armed soldiers in the streets of the capitol of this nation, protests in the most beautiful cities in this country, too many men and women arrested, too many dead for no reason, an ongoing pandemic that has claimed more than 105,000 lives, millions are unemployed, and oh, yeah-- there are still children locked up at our border because their parents wanted a better life for them. And the Secretary of Defense calls the cities and neighborhoods where most Americans live "the battlespace."

For one of the very few times in my life, I feel fairly useless here. I'm a white woman in my late 50s. Protesting and marching are not for me. I've written checks and clicked "donate" buttons, and I voted today, but it feels like such a small effort. I wish we had a leader, a real leader, not the hollow man in the White House and the sycophants who serve him, to help lead us out of this space that we're in. I wish I knew a way to wrap George Floyd's family in love and comfort, and the families of so many others, too-- Eric Garner, Tamir Rice, Freddie Gray, Ahmaud Aubrey, Philando Castile, Breonna Taylor. . .and on and on and on. I wish I knew better ways to let my black brothers and sisters know that their pain is felt by Americans of all races, and we are not indifferent to their suffering.

Sigh. I know all is not useless, as this country is better than it was when I was a child, and even better than when I was a young woman. It just feels very hard right now. Perhaps we are witnessing the birth of an even better country. Can it be? Can we make it so? Can we piece together something better out of the crises we face today? I pray that we are strong enough to do so, I really do, and I cry because of all the time and lives we have already lost.

All my love and good will to all of you today, quilty friends, with my wishes for a better tomorrow for ALL of us, together. The moral universe bends, and let it bend toward justice, please Lord.

Thanks for listening to my rambling,

Wednesday, May 27, 2020

On the way back

Hello everyone! How is life going for you? For me, some of the burnout from the past couple of months of overwork has begun to ease, and I'm finally starting to feel normal again. An uneasy normal, but much more like myself. I was in the sewing room cleaning some things up this weekend, and I sat down and sewed and actually enjoyed it. I'm definitely on my way back!

I am so behind on all my projects, and on answering comments (sorry folks. I do really appreciate you!) and on many other things in my life as well. I finally vacuumed the bedroom for the first time in two months. Yikes. I am not even going to mention the state of the sewing room. So, if you're behind on everything, where do you start? Any where you want! I started here:

These are the green stars for the Random Ohio Stars quilt I'm working on for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge this year. It turns out to be a good thing that I didn't choose something more involved, doesn't it? I don't have much darker green, and almost no sage green, so this is what I managed to scrape together for the month. I think they're okay, though that larger one is kind of boring. Oh, well! It will get lost in the quilt, right?

I also wanted to go back and catch up on the colors I missed. I'm pretty sure that March was aqua and teal (Ihaven't looked up April yet), so here is my large aqua star:

Shown with some of the lovely flowers on my back deck! It felt good to bring out those larger pots and plant a few things here at our still-new-to-us house. We didn't move here until August, so we missed all of the spring and early summer, so I'm still discovering what's growing around here. There really is NO landscaping at all, just random stuff growing and out of control pachysandra. It's going to be a challenge.

I've also been working on a layout for the modern blocks:

I tried a few things and this is the one I liked the most. I haven't started sewing them all together yet, but these are easy as pie to make and so I'm zipping through them in between other things. I'm not to the end of my pile of cut blocks yet, and I might be tempted to cut a few more. I guess we'll see!

Hope you all are getting some stitching time in, even with the much nicer weather we've been having. My energy is definitely coming back, so I will see you again very soon! 

Sharing at soscrappy for RSC20.

Saturday, May 16, 2020

Looking green out there

Hi all! I really didn't fall off the earth, I promise! The worst semester ever finally ended, and since I turned in the final grades I've just kind of been floating a bit. Feeling a little unmoored without 10 to 12 hours of work to do, ya know? And I wouldn't want to insult anyone who has actual PTSD, but it's felt a little like PTSD, if you know what I mean. So I've just been kind of disjointed, petting some fabric, cleaning some things, planting a few flowers. It's been kind of peaceful, to tell the truth.

As a result, I only have one picture to show today. This is a first!

These are the blocks I made for the color challenge at Patterns by Jen. These were very easy and were almost mindless to piece. Usually I dislike big blocks with big pieces, but these blocks have really been saving my sanity through this whole virus experience. And I love the green leaves and the flowers, too. So looking forward to planting more stuff outside.

The only other fabric-related things I have to show today are the fun new fabrics I got from Bernie's shop:

Turns out that shopping online is super-easy to do from your sofa, even when your brain is really tired. Seriously, though, I have a plan for all of these fabrics. The birds are going to grace my living room, just as soon as I get motivated to make a few baskets from them.

Finally, a couple of pictures from my sanity-saving walks around the neighborhood. First, some rocks painted by my neighbor's kids to cheer us all up:

Also, the last of the forsythia, which everyone here seems to have (except us, for some odd reason):

So that's what's going on here! I'm still pretty mentally exhausted, so I'll spend this weekend going to our virtual graduation, then wandering around the house some more. It's going to rain a good part of next week, so I have high hopes of actually accomplishing things then. Have a safe and happy weekend, folks!

Sharing at soscrappy because of the dark green, and later (if I remember) at Patterns by Jen.

Thursday, May 7, 2020

Nine patches for Paula

Hello all, and welcome to my stop on the blog hop honoring Paula Budinger. Paula was a good and gentle spirit who blogged about the quilts she made at Paula B Quilts. She made a lot of scrappy quilts for kids, and donated almost all of them. I got to know her through Angela's Rainbow Scrap Challenge, where Paula often linked up her creations. She and I sometimes chatted back and forth, like ya do, about her quilts, especially the antique quilts she collected. And she was a Wisconsinite as well, so we had a small connection there, too.

Paula Budinger

On February 8th, Paula passed away after a short illness. Her obituary is HERE, where you can read about how very awesome she was, from electron microscopes to art and design, all across the country. Paula would have been 79 yesterday, and a bunch of us are honoring her quilting legacy through this blog hop.  Because Paula's life and work made us happy, there are also some "presents" for her birthday, in the form of prizes for you! That information is at the bottom of this post.

Here is what I made in honor of Paula:

Yes, two tops! Both bright and happy and intended for children. Since Paula loved scrappy quilting and bright colors, I thought a quilt made in her honor should be the same. It happens that I had a bit of the animal fabric that I had intended to use for a quilt for my grandson. I didn't like how it looked with the alternate blocks, so I used something else, but I had already cut the animal fabric, so there it was, leftover in a strange size. It worked great for this project, though!

The larger quilt is a giant double 9-patch that measures about 45 by 45. The blocks I had cut from the animal fabric were 15 inches square, perfect for using 5 inch squares to make 9-patches as alternate blocks. It worked great! I chose the yellow and green to coordinate with the animal print, and somehow I managed to use them all up. Eagle-eyed readers will notice that some of those yellow and green squares are actually pieced together. Shhh! This quilt will be donated through Sarah's Hands to Help project.

The smaller quilt top was made with the scraps from the first one. Why not? It needed to be used!  This one used a different green and yellow, both polka dots. It happens that I made this in 9-patch form as well. I made four 9-patches with 6-1/2 inch squares and then combined them to make this 36-inch square top. This little quilt will go to Jack's Basket, an organization that celebrates babies with Down Syndrome.

I am very happy with how these two tops turned out, and they will be among the first things I quilt up when this crazy semester is over. I feel like Paula would understand! I have a few small scraps left of this fabric, but otherwise I am thrilled that it is used up and will help comfort some small people.

And now for the presents for you all!  Here are the prizes being offered:

Lorna, Sew Fresh Quilts, $50 gift certificate for her pattern shop.
Yvonne Quilting Jetgirl, 2 PDF patterns of choice.
Bernie Needle and Foot, $25 certificate for her shop.
A fat quarter bundle from Figo Fabrics
A set of quilty gift cards from Initial Thought by DMF  Note cards set 1
A pattern of choice from Karen, Sugar Free Quilts
A $30 gift certificate for Doris, Cactus Queen Quilt Co
A PDF pattern of choice from Joanne,
$25 gift certificate to Fat Quarter Shop
(donated by Janice Holton)

"How do I get one of these prizes"? you ask. Here's how it works-- below is a list of bloggers honoring Paula through this hop. Every comment entered on one of the posts in the hop by Friday, May 15, will count as one entry. Winners will be chosen that day from all possible comments by Janice at Color, Creating, and Quilting. Then the winners get a happy package in the mail! International readers, you can enter, too, as many of the prizes are digital. So you get happy email instead of happy mail.

Thanks, all, for stopping by to honor Paula's life and legacy. Be sure to give thanks for all your quilty friends, too. As we've all sadly learned, life is sometimes too short, and it looks a little less colorful without all of us in it. 

Wednesday, May 6

Karen @ KaHolly
Kate @ Smiles From Kate

Friday, May 1, 2020

A tiny bright spot

Hi everyone, and welcome to May! Did someone check to be sure April really left? Because that was one month that really seemed to last forever. I think we can all be glad that it's gone. You know what else should be gone? Neighbors outside in their bathrobes. Yoga pants, people! It's like jammies, but for grownups. And you can wear them outside without scandalizing the neighbors.

Okay, well. Amazingly, I have a finish today! What? Yes, I finished something and just put the last stitches in the binding last night. That binding was another thing that seemed to last forever, but now it's done and I can show you this happy quilt:

This is my tiny sampler quilt, made from the small block patterns offered by Angela for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge last year. (The patterns are still available and you can find them all HERE.) Each of these blocks finishes at just 4-1/2 inches, and the quilt itself is just about 46 by 50.

Last year, I started out not intending to make this quilt, but the blocks were so darned cute they drew me in, and well, here we are. I ended up having a lot of fun making this, and even enjoyed stitching the binding.

This has actually been quilted for several weeks, but I had a hard time settling on a binding. All along, I had thought that I should make a binding that matched the background striping in the quilt, but now we're all in an extremely stressful period, so who has time for that? I ended up settling on a pale green print that doesn't pull the eye away from the cute blocks. The backing is a narrow striped fabric.

This was quilyed for me by Alycia, and I'm thrilled with how it turned out. This little quilt also turns out to be the perfect size for a large wall in my dining room, which is where I'm going to hang it this weekend. It will be the perfect amount of color in there, and I know I'll smile every time I see it.

As for a favorite block, I still can't choose one! I love that the owl and the kitten are right next to each other, though.

Everyone have as wonderful a weekend as possible in this strange time we're living in. I'm going to rest a bit, I hope, because classes end next week and finals begin. Yahoo! The end is in sight, and I could not be happier.  Stay safe and healthy out there!

Sharing at Confessions of a Fabric Addict, Finished or Not Friday, Brag About Your Beauties, and soscrappy for RSC20.